Evart bank robbed on Monday

EVART — A man who robbed an Evart credit union is being held on one count of bank robbery, but could face federal charges once the FBI concludes its investigation into the Monday morning heist.

The man, identified by police as an Evart resident between the ages of 25 and 28, walked into Central Michigan Community Federal Credit Union around 9:40 a.m. on Monday.

“I think he went in there with the intention of robbing the place,” said Evart Chief of Police Zackary Szakacs, adding that it was unclear if the man is a regular customer of the bank.

The credit union was the only bank open in the area – all others were closed in observance of President’s Day – and there were three tellers on staff at the time.

Szakacs said the man spotted a stack of cash lying on a counter behind the teller. He brandished a pocket knife and demanded that she hand it over. As the woman began to give the money to the man, he stabbed her right hand.

He took the cash, estimated by bank employees to be about $5,000, and fled the credit union on foot.

Police arrived moments later and brought the department’s K-9 unit, Officer Beam. The dog tracked footprints left by the man in the snow in front of the credit to the man’s house, where he was arrested.

The suspect was arrested within two hours of fleeing the bank, Szakacs said.

“I’m really happy that in a matter of two hours we’ve got our suspect in jail,” he said. “We worked well here. ... The K-9 did a great job, as did MSP. I want to give a special thanks to Shane Helmer, Evart’s fire chief, who gave us a great lead.”

The teller who was stabbed refused Emergency Medical Services and will be fine, Szakacs said.

The man is lodged at Osceola County Jail and his case was expected to be turned over to the FBI on Tuesday. Szakacs said he expects the man to be arraigned later this week, but isn’t sure if he will face additional charges for the assault of the teller.

The stolen money has not yet been recovered, but Szakacs said the department will secure a search warrant and recover the cash from the man’s house.

Evart Police Department was assisted by Michigan State Police Reed City post, Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office and Osceola County Sheriff’s Office.